Luxury travel – is it the same as “gay” travel?

One thing that annoys me more than most is stereotypes. Probably stems from my life growing up gay, where the gay stereotype was shot at me from every direction in the media and I never really felt comfortable with it. But at the same time, here I am as a founder of a travel blog all about G-A-Y travel.

To me, gay travel isn’t anything special. Travel is just travel—gay, straight or anything else. But as a gay adult who has traveled around the world, it’s important for me to know there are plenty of other gay travelers out there—and also important for the world to know, too.

So, what is gay travel really all about? Is it about nightlife, luxury tours, group tours? I’m not sure there’s a single answer. Which is why it irks me so much when people think most gay travelers are interested in the same places, or in the same types of tours—more often than not of the luxury variety.

When I travel to the UK, for example, I’m not looking for luxury 5 star hotels in London. Not every gay traveler is enormously wealthy nor do we all want to shell out our money on an expensive hotel. I’d rather spend it on a longer vacation, nicer meals or even a second trip.

Within the demographic of gay travelers, there’s quite a big variety: backpackers, cruises, rtw, luxury, solo travel…. We’re not all interested in fancy rooms or boutique hotels. I’m a gay traveler, but also a gay backpacker. Luxury travel isn’t the same as gay travel—it’s just a part of it.


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Adam Groffman

Adam is a gay travel blogger and writes the popular blog, Travels of Adam, in addition to being the editor and publisher of My Gay Travel Guide. He likes beaches, sleeping in unmade beds, reading newspapers and city trips. His work has been published in Vanity Fair, Huffington Post, the DETAILS network and numerous travel websites. Follow him on Google+ and Pinterest for more travel inspiration.

8 thoughts on “Luxury travel – is it the same as “gay” travel?”

  1. Although everyone’s different, I must say that I fit this stereotype. Well, not the muscle bodied parties, partying all night, and tanning stereotype. But I do enjoy luxury travel. I make a decent living,and I only have a limited number of free time to travel so I go all out. I’m working most of the year, so why not splurge to treat myself to some R&R when I have the chance. And I think tourism boards market to certain stereotypical locations cause its a place where gays are widely accepted and can be free with themselves. You don’t see Iran marketing to gays, cause they don’t want them there! I say, as a consumer, you should be socially conscious and spend money in places that support equality. Why pay to travel to a place you might get arrested or killed in?

  2. I could not agree more with you. Marqueting professionals have labeled the gay community as a group with high purchasing power that only travel to places to enjoy the night or the sun in speedos after long sessions at the gym. I do not consider myself a traveller of this group seeking sun, party and modeled bodies, but I love traveling and all types of destinations, from luxury hotels to remote villages without any amenities … the most important thing is to travel and learn about local culture and enjoy the place. For a long time I searched this kind of community looking for stylish and lovely places but I coudln’t find any, that’s why I founded a page aimed at LGBT community to report places both gay and non-gay but interesting to visit. Hope you like it. Greetings.

  3. One of my many pet peeves about advertising in GBLT travel. There are many of us who couldn’t care less about special deals to go to P-town, designer anything, and so on. I think I’ve stayed at a 4-star maybe twice in my whole life, and both times was because I got a killer deal through a friend or my former employer paid for it. It isn’t my style. And then add in the other dynamic of GBLT travel: Traveling as a family. Oy vey.

  4. Society’s views on the LGBTQ community is shifting and marketing will follow. Right now, it seems like most travel advertising assumes we all want an expensive trip to Provincetown / Fort Lauderdale / Mykonos / Sitges where we will be treated to throngs of muscled men in Speedos. That will change.

    Full disclosure: we were just in Sitges. However, we are being fairly disruptive and camping our way from Las Vegas to Denver. Take that gay stereotypes! 🙂

  5. In the eyes of advertising and marketing people they are. It is well known that Gay people have the largest amount of disposable incomes. And they go after that money with ads of a luxurious life style as an attraction.

    1. Suppose you’re right. Unfortunately advertisers aren’t always accurate with their stereotypes…but I’m sure there’s a market for luxury gay travel.

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